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The Premier League is Heading for Disaster!!!

VBer Stubbs explains to us why the Premier League is doomed in an article written for his Blog earlier this month (click here).

The Premier League is heading for disaster, today's Guardian (early in June) carries a story about the debts run up by the leagues clubs (click here), it will come as no surprise that the top 4 in the league are also the top 4 in debt.

Chelsea and Manchester United are both 700 million in debt, Arsenal are 416m in debt and Liverpool are 280m in debt. Fulham are a surprising 5th at almost 200m, all these teams are either bankrolled by a millionaire owner or they've mortgaged the stadium and other assets and they're owned by the banks (does that mean we actually own them?)

With this amount of debt, the only way the owners can ever hope to make their money back is to sell them to someone richer, but that can't go on forever. How many people in the world could afford to buy any of those top 4 clubs, and if they've had the business nous to make that much money, would they think buying a football club in that position was good business?

For the big 4 clubs, the pressure to win is enormous, winning keeps their cash flow positive, the extra cash that the Champions League brings is a must, you only have to look at Leeds and the position they found themselves in not too long ago. What would happen if Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester United or Liverpool failed to finish in the top 4? Well I don't think it would mean a collapse on the Leeds scale, but 2 seasons in a row? 3?

Whenever teams are under such vast pressure to win, there comes the temptation to cheat.

If you think I'm being over dramatic, you can look to Italy in 2006 when Lazio, Juventus, Milan and Fiorentina were all found guilty of match fixing and either relegated or banned from European competition (click here). It's not too hard a leap to make to see that kind of thing happening in the Premier League, or even the Championship with the riches up for grabs. It wouldn't surprise me if we see such allegations in this country in the next 4 or 5 years, and when they do, the Premiership is doomed.


For the very latest Premier League odds

Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

The Journalist

Writer: Stubbs Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Monday June 22 2009

Time: 6:09PM

Your Comments (oldest first)

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Good article dude, thanks for allowing us to share your Blog with your fellow VBers.
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22/06/2009 18:14:00

The top 4 will be ok. Chelsea's debt is to their owner who can write it off any time he wants. Utd are one of the biggest brands in sports whose debts are completely unrelated to their spending habits. If a billionaire were to service those debts he'd happily never see another loss on the accounts. Arsenals debts are from their stadium and by all accounts it has been financed in such way that the debt is comfortably servicable. I'm not sure about liverpools finances. The clubs that should worry are those who are spending more than they bring in and don't have a billionaire owner (wigan?). The top 4 will always have the option of jumping ship to a european league or trying to sell their TV rights individually if times get too hard. To be honest, with every club in the premier league becoming foreign owned, don't be suprised if its the rest of the football league that suffers. These guys would have no qualms about bringing in the American style - no promotion or relegation structure - that makes so much money for the NBA, NFL etc. It would then be every club outsude the premier league that needed to worry about going bust!
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22/06/2009 19:37:00

Good read that Stubbsy!!!! Excellent read... good to see this getting some airtime!
Mikey D
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23/06/2009 11:42:00

The only 2 sides in a bit of bother are Arsenal and Pool. With City emerging, if either become the team thats drops out of the championsleague even just for a year or two, then they could be left with some serious financial problems.
Report Abuse
24/06/2009 13:40:00

true that Hudds!!! I wouldnt bet on Chelsea running into problems though!!! lol... Having said that United would be frigged if they missed out!!!
Mikey D
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24/06/2009 16:25:00

The main thing in football is too win - Leagues, Cups, Tournaments etc etc so the pressure on clubs is massive, obv the Top 4 have the most to gain and lose....they are in massive debt, albiet from Chelsea this has to be managed but if Roman gets sick of his toy, then who knows wot the future holds....the temptation for the clubs outside the Top 4 is to spend big in order to break into this 'private club' Spurs seem to have an endless pot, constantly spending, although no where near the extent of others...the trouble is Spurs have spent all this money and have stuggled to get near the top4 on a regular basis for some reason or another, which withthe teams they have put together is mind blowing!! other teams eg Fulham being 200m in debt is amazing, wot have they spent all this money on?? and to achieve wot exactly?? yeah they had a good season but for that kinda of money.....apart from Rovers, Wigan etc most of English clubs are foreign owned but i believe that this is like those wee toy dogs that bints like Paris carry about for show...status symbols for the rich lol Wot happens when football becomes less fashionable, if this at all possible lol Will these men with more money than sense just go home and buy something else that bleeds out money....At the min, the world of the Premier League is all rosy but with the amounts of money being thrown around, throughout the world, can it IS not inmune to the recession and like some big buisness have found out, being a big name cannot help u when it goes t*ts up
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25/06/2009 09:16:00


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